Teams & MGMT300
Katzenbach and Smith think of a team “as a small number of people with complementary skills who are committed to a common purpose, performance goals, and approach for which they hold themselves mutually accountable” (Smith, 1992). This definition understands the concepts of a team as a provider of a critical lever of performance, this becomes very interesting through the way in which groups and teams are distinguishable from each other, where in some cases groups are understood as a collection of people working through mutual accord of each others roles. According to Katzenbach and Smith, “there is a proven link between teams, individual behavior change, and high-performance” (Smith, 1992).
This week in Management 300 we were placed into teams according to our CV applications and the goals and aspirations that we had put down. I think this is a very justifiable step in creating viable teams, but the concern tends to lie in the matter of whether the variables used to distinguish possible synchronization between students were accurate and consistent. The first question of whether the variables used to create the teams were viable is what I will tackle first. To create these groups the assessors chose to identify likely team members by the goal they had put down on their CV in which they wanted to accomplish from this course. In this category we were given 8 or so options, with an ‘other’, but this other was not expanded on. This places the question of whether people tended to bias one option over another for fear of judgment, or whether opted for an option listed rather than go for an ‘other’ which might have been their actual goal. The second category used to identify the individuals with the other students was through the score they had accomplished in the Mikes Bikes simulation. I think this can be very problematic as in many cases students might have reached the minimum requirement with luck, or without knowledge of what they are doing, this can mean that people who put in a lot of effort might not have reached the threshold, leading to them being placed in the wrong group.
I finally I think its important to look at the consistency of the categories and the way the groups were made. I think one fault or better to say a point of possible discourse would be the fact that people who got low marks were assumed to not putting enough effort, and where placed together in groups. I think this is not consistent with the overall method of placing people of likely goals together with a mixture of simulation scores.
Smith, J. R. (1992). Why Teams Matter. McKinsey Quarterly , 3-27.